If used to his strengths, then striker Lars Veldwijk could easily be Bafana Bafana’s wildcard at the Africa Cup of Nations later this month, coach Stuart Baxter told journalists when explaining his inclusion in the squad.
It was between the gangly 27-year-old forward and Kermit Erasmus for one of the spots in Baxter’s team for the tournament in Egypt – and the coach described Veldwijk as “not easy on the eye, but clinical”.
Baxter confirmed his final 23-man squad for the AFCON on Sunday afternoon, excluding Erasmus, Ben Motshwari and Fortune Makaringe.
“If you would have watched the training session we had today, Lars was so clinical. He’s not scored a lot of goals (24 in 41 games) for no reason. In the game we played he pulled away, played the ball up, took on his chest, knocked it wide, the cross came in and he headed into the back of the net,” said Baxter.
The Englishman admitted the striker might not be every one’s cup of team, but will give Bafana a different dimension.
“When used properly and he gets in those positions he can finish. He’s not so easy on the eye, I will give you that. He is not easy on the eye like a Percy Tau or even a Lebo (Mothiba) – but he is certainly not a bad finisher. He has scored a lot of goals for a reason, so if you put him in the right areas he will finish,” Baxter explained.